Jeff Allen Returns After Injury to Help Lead Chiefs Offensive Line

After getting rolled up on early in the game, Allen returned to help lead the Chiefs

He slowly removed the tape from his ankles and answered questions from reporters about what he just pushed himself through.

It wasn't 15 minutes since the Kansas City Chiefs had defeated the Buffalo Bills, 30-22, Sunday afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium, and left guard Jeff Allen had the look of a player who was equally happy, and yet also, relieved.

He had just been through a brutal 60 minutes of football.

"There are a ton of individual accolades you can give out in a game like that," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said on Monday. "It was a physical game."

One of those accolades would have to go to Allen, who showed everyone what he's about on Sunday.

Midway through the second quarter, Allen was rolled up on during Spencer Ware's 3-yard touchdown run and was forced to leave the game with an ankle injury.

He was questionable to return as he needed assistance from the training staff to get off the field.

Later that quarter, left tackle Eric Fisher left the game with a neck injury, which put the Chiefs in a situation with just five healthy offensive linemen.

Then it happened—another injury.

This time to rookie center Mitch Morse, who had to leave the game with a concussion late in the third quarter.

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At that point, Allen, who had returned from the locker room, was fighting to get back in the game, and despite still hurting and having to push himself past it, he returned to his left guard spot as Zach Fulton moved over to center after filling in earlier for Allen.

"He wanted to go back in the whole time, felt he'd be okay," Reid said of Allen. "We held him out and thought we could kind of cover that up with Zach (Fulton) and then as the numbers started dwindling down, he raced back out there."

Reid said Allen had been wanting to get back on the field even before the injury to Morse.

"It was just letting the reigns off a little bit and [Allen] was out there," he added. "He's a tough kid and he's been that way since we've been here. He's had some injuries, but he always pushes through them.

"If you can push through it, he's going to push through it."

Allen return to help lead a Chiefs offense that started the game off slowly, something they haven't experienced over the past four games.

"Sometimes the games go like that," Allen explained. "The last few weeks we've been starting off fast. That's what we want every game, but sometimes it doesn't work out that way.

"We figured it out and that's what winning teams do."

The Chiefs rallied from a 10-0 deficit to take a 24-22 lead late in the third quarter before Allen returned.

Once Allen returned, the Chiefs had the lead and were given the ball at their own 10-yard line with just 10 minutes left in the game.

If they could control the line of scrimmage and grind out some yards with running back Spencer Ware, they could chew up enough clock to seal the win.

It's an offensive lineman's dream.

Photos from the Chiefs Week 12 matchup against the Bills

Led by Allen and his less-than-ideal ankle situation, the Chiefs put together an 11-play, 70-yard drive that ended with Cairo Santos' 37-yard field goal but more importantly, took 6:31 off the clock.

The Bills were down 30-22 and there was now just 3:34 left in the game thanks to the last five offensive linemen on the Chiefs active game-day roster paving the way for Ware to pick up 50 of the 70 yards on that final clock-eating drive.

"Being able to put together a drive at the end of the game and kind of seal it for us, that's big time," Allen said. "That's what we hang our head on as an O-line. When we have an opportunity to put the game on our shoulders, we have to deliver and I think we did that."

The fifth straight win for the Chiefs had a different look than the previous four, and Allen didn't take any extra individual credit for what he pushed himself through because many of his teammates are battling through their own issues right now.

The NFL season is a battle of attrition and this is the time of the year that's really a grind for these guys who are putting their bodies on the line every week.  

"We're a group of brothers," Allen explained. "We know each and every one of us are going to go out there and fight and compete no matter what the situation is. "We're going to scratch and claw and try to find a way. That's what we did today."

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